Adam Simon is the founding Executive Director of the Aviv Foundation, an emerging family foundation dedicated to empowering disadvantaged children to break the cycle of poverty and to promoting deep engagement with Jewish learning, texts, values, and tradition, all within an open and inclusive framework. Aviv prioritizes an evidence-based investment strategy, and seeks to create relationships with organizations and partners based on trust, transparency, and impact.

Adam worked at the Charles and Lynn Schusterman Family Foundation from 2008 to 2016, most recently as Senior Director. He led efforts to help the Jewish community recruit, develop and retain exceptional professional and volunteer leaders by delivering best-in-class trainings, facilitating networking opportunities and coaching organizations to invest in their most valuable asset—their people.

With a professional background in both the for-profit and for-impact sectors, Adam has built grassroots service initiatives based on Jewish values, served as the Director of Hillel at Northwestern University, and managed warehouse operations at a company involving hundreds of team members and hundreds of thousands of industrial supplies.


The First Year in the Life of a New Executive Director

Posted on September 14, 2017 by Adam Simon, John Hicks, Laura McCargar, Sharmila Rao Thakkar

How can your board develop a transition plan to maximize your new or incoming executive director’s prospects for success? What is the board and board chair’s role in orienting the new CEO? What tips do successful freshman CEO’s have for developing strong board/staff relations; setting boundaries; learning more about the community and causes served by the foundation; and understanding and… Read More

What Has Been the Impact of Your Fellowship Programs to the Communities You Fund? and Have You Been Able to Measure That Impact?

Posted on July 23, 2015 by Adam Simon, Monisha Kapila, Susan Dobkins

This month we are delighted to feature a question recently asked during our July webinar, Fellowship programs: Honoring family legacy and building future community leaders. This webinar highlighted the benefits and impact fellowship programs have on not only community members, but also the family foundation. Fellowship programs can be a complementary program to your grantmaking that honors the legacy of a loved one and encourages further collaboration efforst with community leaders. The featured presenters are Adam Simon from the Schusterman Foundation, Susan Dobkins and Dion Rurik from The Russell Family Foundation, and Monisha Kapila from ProInspire… Read More
Voices from the Field

Ready: Invest! Set: Customize! Go: Impact!

Posted on May 27, 2015 by Adam Simon

What would it take to create a core of exceptional leaders equipped with the tools and capacity to be effective change agents, networked to maximize the reverberation of their leadership and committed to doing so for their entire lives? At the Charles and Lynn Schusterman Family Foundation, this question is at the core of our mission to empower young people to make a positive impact in their communities. In all of our focus areas, we create and support initiatives that invest in strengthening the leadership potential of individuals, as we believe the key to solving our most intractable societal issues lies in the strength of the leaders that spearhead such changes. … Read More